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Egypt: Poet Galal El-Behairy has been conditionally released from prison

25 April 2019
28 December 2018 marks 300 days behind bars for Galal El-Behairy, who was jailed for "publishing false news"and "insulting the army" in his poetry.
Photo: Part of Galal El-Behairy’s new poem penned in prison / Ramy Essam

 

25 Arpil 2019

UPDATE: Poet Galal El-Behairy conditionally released from prison 

According to Freemuse sources, Egyptian poet Galal El-Behairy has been conditionally released from the Civilian Court case that he faced because of his art.

However, he will stay behind bars after being sentenced to three years in prison and 10 000 Egyptian pounds (480 euros) fine in the Military Court in Cairo, for “publishing false news” and “insulting the army” in his unreleased book of poetry The Finest Women on Earth

Galal El-Behairy was arrested on March 3, 2018. He continues to write poetry from prison. His latest piece—in Arabic—has been published here by Ramy Essam.

 

3 January 2019

Egypt: 300th day behind bars for poet Galal El-Behairy

As of 28 December 2018, Egyptian poet Galal El-Behairy has spent 300 days behind bars over his poetry.

El-Behairy was sentenced to three years in jail and fined 10,000 Egyptian pounds (480 euros) on 31 July 2018 for “publishing false news” and “insulting the army” in his unpublished book of poetry, The Finest Women on Earth.

He is appealing the sentence.

The poet was arrested on 3 March 2018, just days after the release of the song Balaha by Egyptian musician Ramy Essam that uses El-Behairy’s lyrics.

In a separate, ongoing civil case, El-Behairy is accused of insulting Islam and the current administration in the song’s lyrics. Essam has a warrant for his arrest in absentia over the song and accompanying video.

El-Behairy continues to write poetry from prison. His latest piece—in Arabic—has been published here by Ramy Essam.

In July 2018, six UN Special Rapporteurs urged Egyptian authorities to release Galal El-Behairy and “acquit him of all charges related to the creative expression of his political views”.

 

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